Expulsion from Derna bastion may show limits for Islamic State in Libya

Members of the Libyan pro-government forces, aim a weapon during their deployment in the Lamluda area, southwest of the city of DernaBy Ulf Laessing and Ayman al-Warfalli CAIRO/BENGHAZI, Libya (Reuters) – Islamic State jihadists have exploited widespread chaos to gain a foothold in Libya, but their ejection from an eastern city suggests they may not achieve a Iraq-style takeover due to strong local rivals and the absence of sectarian divisions. Last month, local Islamist fighters reinforced by local civilians ousted Islamic State militants from Derna on Libya's eastern Mediterranean coast, one of two bastions the jihadists had established in the North African oil-producing country. It was the first setback in Libya for the ultra-violent jihadist movement that has sent in combatants and clerics from Tunisia, Yemen and other Arab states to try repeat its success in Iraq and Syria, where it has captured vast territories and proclaimed a "caliphate" based on medieval religious precepts.


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